When I asked on Facebook what Leadership issues were you struggling with the most, several questions came back about how to manage your boss. It can be tricky and certainly it’s not the same as telling your boss what to do as that could get you… well… fired. Eek!
We call it Upward Management and some time ago I wrote a class by the very same name for one of Contagious Companies’ consulting clients. Upward Management essentially means you help your boss better understand how to work with you and in partnership with your efforts. This includes helping them to be more aware of your recognition needs, preferred communication style, speed of work, level of initiative and so much more. Seemingly this would be best facilitated by using the complete details from an in depth personality profile, such as CORE Profile, but this is not always available and if you need results now, here are a few methods to better manage your boss and NOT get fired.
Share information readily with your boss and ask for what you need.
Continue to have your boss’s back and mention that “Next time, what might also work is …”
When your boss asks you for feedback, share it openly and honestly (maybe after you ask if they really want the truth) and hold no attachment to what they do with the information.
Become a trusted resource and build rapport by seeing your boss as a person AND your leader.
Try to preempt what your boss will need and provide it prior to being asked.
Learn to ask what items on your list must be done first if that is not made readily clear to you.
Be able to say “No, I am not able to complete that right now, due to this other project, but I can do it this afternoon, or I can put the other project aside.” You are in charge of your boundaries and will leave your cape at home more often than not.
Be agreeable without being a doormat.
Follow through and do what you say will do.
Pay more attention to what you are doing than you pay to what others do.
So much of managing one’s boss is about managing one’s own behavior, but whether with a boss or fellow co-worker, you train others how to treat you and if you want your boss to treat you differently, it begins with you and how you behave.
Have a fantastic Monday and Stay Contagious!
Monica Wofford, MBA, CSP, is an international speaker, trainer, and author who helps managers who were promoted, actually become prepared to lead.